The symbolism of the Bulgarian embroidery
The Bulgarian "shevitsa" is beautiful embroidery, which hides symbols and encoded information. The art of embroidery originates from ancient times and is connected with the national spirit, the intangible cultural and spiritual heritage. Traditional Bulgarian embroidery is characterized by great regional and local diversity, and can be seen on regional costumes of both men and women. Once upon a time, Bulgarian embroideries revealed the social status and ethnic origin of a person. The
The ornamentation of the "shevitsa" accounts for much of the uniqueness of the Bulgarian costumes. Some of the motifs used for the decoration of the clothes are rather ancient like the "tree of life", rosette, circle, cross. One of the most common is "Elbetitza" which symbolizes unity and harmony in the human body and the world. It represents double cross that marks the eight directions of the world - North, South, West, East and the four intermediate ones. It also protects from Illness and negative influence. Another fundamental symbol is "Katanitza" which is known as a symbol of the family. It gives strength, harmony and balance in the family. The various motifs could be seen on carpets, wraps, tablecloths. Nowadays, you can also find them on jewelries like necklaces, rings, and earrings.
Colors are of key importance for the ethnic specificity of Bulgarian folk costumes. The typical colors used in embroidery designs are red, green, white and yellow. Each of them has a specific meaning: RED is connected with blood and life, GREEN expresses renewal and life, WHITE is symbol of purity and completion, YELLOW is associated with the sun.
The folk art is a transfer of knowledge memory, inherited by generations and keeps the national spirit alive.